Life status

Apr. 6th, 2013 02:08 am
carlfoxmarten: (podium)
[personal profile] carlfoxmarten
Hmm, I've been ignoring this again, I see...

Right now I'm still delivering newspapers, but I've also picked up another job that I do on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays for a whole lot of extra income.

I'm doing door-to-door lawn aeration, and it's a very interesting, if demanding, job.
When we attended the information session about it we were told that the work isn't for everybody, and I definitely believe them.

It's essentially like cold-calling, especially here in BC, where they've only been for two years prior.
Compare that to Ontario, where they've been for sixteen years, which means they've already managed to educate people on the benefits of aerating their lawns, so the people who have come over temporarily to help us get up to speed have been occasionally joking that all they have to do is show up in a neighbourhood and people will throw them money to aerate their lawns.

There are two aspects to the work: The physical aspect of actually aerating the lawn, and the sales aspect of selling the service.
The physical aspect of actually doing the work is something I got used to very quickly, and have been able to do good work pretty swiftly, completing an average lawn in less than fifteen minutes.

The real problem for me is the sales aspect.
I've spoken about this before, but I'm usually a pretty shy person, so walking up to some stranger's door to talk to them about getting their lawn done is somewhat nerve-wracking.
Even now, after three weeks of work, I still approach the work with some trepidation.
(contrast that with going home, when I usually sing along with whatever I'm playing on my MP3 player)

The pay is far more than I've ever gotten delivering newspapers, but as it's on a commission basis, it depends on how well I sell that day.
We get paid in cash at the end of each work day, and my last four days of work have all been over $60, at one point reaching $115.
(my first days weren't all that great, as I was still learning the business and techniques, as well as getting over my shyness, so I didn't make all that much)

Right now, I'm having some problems with my knees from all the jogging and running I do to make it look like I'm really busy.
It's caused me to bump my next day of work back a bit, which I wasn't sure I should do because half the crew is off on a road-trip right now, but since moving quickly is very important for making lots of sales, it's kind of necessary.

Another problem that I'm having is the schedule for the day.
I have to get up around 6am (compared with 9, or even 11am), catch the shuttle at 7:55, have an hours-long meeting in the morning to learn more about selling, eventually get dropped off in a neighbourhood around 11am, walk quickly or jog around all day trying to make sales, then start moving even faster around 6:30pm to get even more sales, finally getting picked up some time between 7:30 and 8:30, hopefully getting back to the shop before 10pm, and hoping I can get back home before 11pm.
This means I have absolutely no time to do much of anything at home on that day, which puts my work days pretty much off-limits for doing anything helpful around the house, like dishes, dinner, or other chores.

So far I've made over five hundred dollars, but with things I've bought for each day of work, the actual amount is more like four hundred.
(they have a commissary so you can buy stuff like such as extra work shirts, hats, drinks, energy bars and the like)

Unfortunately, I'm still not entirely comfortable with the idea of what I'm doing.
The best example of this I can give stems from the fact that I'd said I never wanted to work in food service.
Well, there's a new Tim Horton's coffee shop opening up just four blocks away from my house and they're currently hiring for it.
And I'm seriously contemplating applying.

On the other hand, it is really nice to know that I actually have money on hand right now.
Despite delivering newspapers for over ten years, I haven't really done a very good job of saving any of the money I've made from it.
Because part of my anxiety over living at home is from a distinct lack of funds, this extra cash has gone quite a long ways towards making me feel more comfortable with myself.
(I was even able to order and pay for pizza for family dinner once, something that would have cost almost an entire month's salary before, and therefore unthinkable)

Because of this, I've managed to deposit two hundred dollars in my savings account.
(which practically doubled what was in there already)

Anyway, onto other subjects.

A couple of months ago, my grandmother gave me some money to get a memento of my university career from their bookstore, and while I had been there to have a look around, they didn't have much out at the time, probably due to the construction they had going on at the time.
On Wednesday I was over there again, and found a very nice gold pin with the university's crest on it.
I also picked up a new water bottle, a pin with their current logo on it (different from their crest. I still prefer the crest), and a button with "Every day is a gift, without a receipt and no hope of store credit or exchange" on it. =^.~=

Then I went to Lee Valley and picked up a new penlight.
I love this new penlight! =^.^=
It's a Suprabeam Q1, 100 lumens (or 20 lumens if you tell it to dim the beam), and variable beam width.

On the other hand, I've got to stop buying biographies.
Black Bond Books' biographies aisle is a little dangerous for my pocketbook, as I keep finding biographies of people I somewhat admire, including Albert Einstein, Groucho Marx, Betty White, Carol Burnett, Bob Hope, and more.
The problem I'm running into is the fact that I'm having problems finishing (or even starting) many of my recent acquisitions.
(I have a biography of Alexander Graham Bell that's about two inches thick, but it's so tightly packed with information that I've only been able to read about two chapters of it so far)

Development on my Dig Site mobile game has somewhat stalled for the moment while I try to figure out which direction I'm supposed to be going with it.
Instead, I've started prototyping another game that should be easier to write.
It was inspired by a minigame in an adventure game I played ages ago, about connecting two electrical bars with connections that the computer tries to block.

Because I'm writing a prototype, the code is simpler than it would be for full production, so hopefully I can get something fun up and running pretty quickly.
So far, I can place both connections and blockers, and the game can tell when the player wins or loses.
Next up is having the computer make its own moves.
This could be very tricky, as it has to make very intelligent decisions in order to block a human opponent.

So, on the whole, I'm a bit more comfortable with myself now, but it seems to have come at the expense of some of my health.


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Carl Foxmarten

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